Tipe 5Posted: December 16, 2011
PARTICIPANT EVALUATION OF TIPE VERSION 5.0
(CDS, from November 28-December 9,2011)
Sessions on Macroeconomics were handled by Dr.Pulapre Balakrishnan, Director, Centre For Development Studies. His enlightening presentations focused on the origin and development of Macro Economics after the great depression of 1930’s. Dr. Balakrishnan organised the first three lectures around the prominent milestones in the evolution of macro economics theory and policy over the past 75 years. He discussed classical theories, J.M.Keynes criticism over the classical theory, J.M.Keynes General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money, role of Monetary Policy of Milton Friedman and idea of rational expectation. The fourth session was on the causes and consequences of Indian inflation. The commitment, dedication and professionalism of the speaker inspired all of us. It was really a wonderful learning opportunity.
Law and Economics Interface: An agenda for Development Studies
Before coming to this Tipe 05 programme this participant never thought that there is any interdependence between economics and law. But Prof.N.R.Madhava Menon, Hon.Professor of Centre for Development Studies explained that there is some overlapping areas between these two subjects. In other words, these two disciplines are complementary to each other. Prof. Menon explained in detail with examples about the financial requirement in implementing the law passed by Legislators. In western countries like USA there is a convention that there will be provision for financial provision in the law itself. As pointed out by the learned professor, “Law and economics” is a way of thinking, a technique of analysis, a tool for evaluating legal rules in terms of its “allocative efficiency”. Implementation of a law or rule requires finance and to establish an economic activity, legal provision is required. So legal students should study economics and economics students should study law. This participant is of the opinion that the title of the class should be Complementarity of Economics and Law instead of Law and Economics Interface where interface means boundary or limit since there is no boundary in between.
Trends in inequality and poverty
Eventhough poverty has become a major issue of debate in India,
especially after the affidavit filed before the Supreme Court by Planning Commission, we got a clear understanding of its real meaning and dimensions only after attending the presentation by Dr.M.H. Suryanarayana from Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai. He started his discussion by introducing the basic concept of poverty and elaborated inequality, various dimensions, human development index incorporated with inequality, poverty in various states and calorie intake of individuals in various states as well as various sections of the community. He observed that “Per capita calorie intake in general has declined for the richer sections and increased for the poorer ones, though not sufficiently, in both rural and urban India. It is difficult on the basis of available information and knowledge to explain the observed relationship among income/consumption, calorie intake and health outcomes. In other words, calorie norm may no longer be relevant today for defining the minimum subsistence. Hence, one could explore alternative options for distributional outcome evaluation” Dr.Suryanarayana’s highly informative lecture broadened the insight of all the participants.
Micro economics sessions were handled by Dr.Anup Kumar Bhandari. He explained all important theoretical issues in micro economics in five sessions. In all the sessions, Dr. Bhandari used mathematical tools to explain economic theory. Discussions centred around topics like Theory of consumer behavior, theory of production, theory cost, various market structures, game theory etc. Since most of us have only limited exposure to mathematical calculations, classes were somewhat difficult to follow. However, all of us appreciated the dedication, commitment and patience of the young resource person.
Industrial sector and economic liberalization
We got excellent opportunity to get complete knowledge of merits and demerits of economic liberalization in the Indian industrial sector. Professor (Dr.) Sunil Mani discussed the liberalization in the industrial sector, growth in various sectors of the economy, GDP growth rate before and after new economic policy, export and import, FDI inflow and outflow, country wise and sector wise and region wise distribution of FDI etc. in the session. He led the discussion with the latest statistical figures from the internet and also informed us about various websites containing statistical information Professor Sunil Mani’s excellent presentation was highly informative. There is no doubt that it enabled us to have a clear understanding about the industrial sector.
Trends in India’s macro economic performance since 1991
Prof.(Dr.)D.Narayana discussed with us major changes occurred in various areas of economy after the new economic policy. Growth rate in various sectors of the economy, investment rate , saving rate, population, education, state growth rates, land area availability, growth rate in various countries, poverty in India, reduction in the poverty etc. were the main areas of discussion. In his highly interactive session, Prof. Narayana presented the latest data. This discussion helped us to understand the growth in macro economic variables, problems of poverty, land reforms and other related issues In the Indian economy. Special thanks to Professor Narayana.
Prof.K. Navaneethan dicussed various statistical methods used in the teaching and research of economics. Levels of measurement, various types of data, various diagrammatic representation of data, shapes of distribution, range, standard deviation etc. were elaborated in detail in class. We hope this will be very useful in handling the class on economics and statistics.
Most of the teachers of economics are facing problems in teaching economy theory due to insufficient knowledge of mathematics. Dr.M.H. Suryanarayana helped us to study econometrics in detail with the help of examples. He was very successful in teaching from the basics of econometrics to advanced topics in econometrics. He also attracted our attention to the various defective practices in calculating poverty and other estimates of the Government of India and other state Governments.
WTO issues in trade
WTO and other international trade agreements is an area which attracts increasing attention. Dr.K.N.Harilal , Faculty Member of CDS discussed with us the important trade agreements in WTO and its impacts on the developing countries like India. WTO is doing excellent activities in the field of international trade and most of the countries are benefitting over the trade also. However, there are some issues like tariffs in agriculture, service sector etc. in WTO. The discussion related to the WTO will help us to teach international trade and agreements to our students.
Productivity in the Industrial sector
As enhancement of productivity is a major source of economic growth, it is an issue of contemporary relevance. But various methods of measurement of productivity is not known to many. Dr.Parameswaran, Assistant Professor of CDS explained to us various methods used in measuring productivity in our economy on the basis of theory and empirical data. He discussed various statistical tools which are being used in measuring productivity also.
Mr.V.Sriram explained various features of K.N.Raj Library of CDS. A noteworthy feature of the library is the library blog which itself is one of the best sources of knowledge available in an around the world. He invited us to the library and showed various facilities in the library, how to search the books and periodicals, availability of rare collection of books etc.
Using Internet resources for teaching and research
Today, internet has become an effective and reliable source of information. However, most of the users encounter difficulties in extracting relevant materials from the internet. Mr.J. Murali beautifully explained to us various materials available in the internet, how to find out, how to search the materials, what are the extension files to be included in the web brousers and what are the precautions to be taken at the time of searching the internet.
Management of the programme
Organisation and management of the Tipe 5 programme was excellent. Modules, time management, selection of resource persons, provision of good quality materials, issue of standard text book, food and accommodation etc. were excellent. We would like to express our sincere gratitude to all the organizers of the course and especially to our co-ordinator Prof.Sunil Mani.
We have a minor suggestion. There are many commonly used computer softwares to teach economics especially geogebra. Without a training in these softwares the teachers may not able to use them effectively in the class. At least in the future programmes computer software training may be included.